CLEVELAND, OH - DECEMBER 10: Joe Thomas #73 of the Cleveland Browns looks on from the sidelines durning the game against the Green Bay Packers at FirstEnergy Stadium on December 10, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Photo: Jason Miller/Getty Images
Photo: Jason Miller/Getty Images

NFL: Cleveland Browns announce Joe Thomas is retiring

Joe Thomas is done. 

The Cleveland Browns announced Wednesday afternoon the 10-time Pro Bowl left tackle has decided to retire. 

In a press release from the team, Thomas said the decision was difficult but “playing in the NFL has taken a toll on my body and I can no longer physically compete at the level I need to.” 

He also praised Browns fans for their loyalty and the city of Cleveland for embracing him after he was chosen in the first round of the 2007 draft out of Wisconsin. 

The only players to be chosen for the Pro Bowl in each of their first 10 seasons are Thomas, Barry Sanders, Lawrence Taylor, Mel Renfro and Merlin Olsen. 

He never missed a snap in his pro career until a torn triceps ended his final season in Week 7. 

Thomas played 10,363 consecutive snaps, which the Browns say is believed to be an NFL record. 

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